Sunday, January 8, 2012

First Full Moon of the Year

I’m usually pretty bad at planning shots.  I know a few people who would say that I’m pretty bad at planning anything, but that’s a (slightly) different thing. 

But, when the day started bright (and cold) and stayed that way (well, it warmed up for a while), I got really curious about the timing of the moonrise.  I knew it was full, as I’d caught glimpses of it, but I didn’t know for certain when it would rise.  As I’ve noted before (as  have many others, all of us in danger of copyright violation)… “there’s an app for that”.

Golden Pic let me know that moonrise as at 1637, exactly nine minutes before sunset.  Given that there’s a small heap of mountains between me and the eastern horizon, we’ll call it a draw.


What I didn’t know for certain was where on the horizon the moon was going to show up.  Given the season, I was guessing south-ish, like the sun, but the moon and the sun have different paths, and I probably sounded like a little kid when I saw the first arc appear just above the stack of the Lupinus.  “Oh, COOL!”

I made some fast adjustments to the tripod and started shooting.

There’s really only one place in the whole county where aligning a freighter and the moon was possible tonight, and that was at the Cannery Pier Hotel.  I’m glad they don’t charge me for tripod space.

Guests and other alert observers started filing into the parking lot, whipping out their cell phones, trying to take in the scene.  I heard lots of moans of disappointment.

And then some of the phone-pokers came over to see the previews on the back of the camera… “Oh!  We need THAT!”

A few minutes later:

Fully Risen

The color in the sky was fading fast with the oncoming clouds, but it was still interesting.

The ships were shifting on the current constantly.  It’s amazing how far they drift even when anchored.  I repositioned again after the last of the pink was gone from the sky.


All shots full frame unless straightening was needed.  All with the 70-300mm G, focal lengths between 200 and 300 mm.  All at ISO 200, tripod mounted.  Photographed in RAW, developed in LR3 prior to optimizing for web use.


Elena Nilaver said...

Masterfully captured! Awesome sequence of colors and composition.

Jebs Apps said...

Wow, those are some GREAT shots! As one of the developers of GoldenPic, we're glad you find this app helpful and it makes your job a little easier. Feel free to shoot us an Email (at with any suggestions you may have!

For anyone else looking for GoldenPic, they can find it at